Some Science With Your Politics

Well, there’s all sorts of rhetoric on all various matters from the main presidential candidates, and there’s still a long way to go until November. It’s nice to hear a bit of chatter about global warming, gas prices, research into alternative fuels, cars with higher efficiency, and other issues that have a high degree of science playing a role in shaping our decisions about our policies and actions, in all aspects of society. (Although there is some occasional mention at some points at state level, it would be nice to hear a lot more about concerted thoughts about public transportation infrastructure, but perhaps that’s just way too much to ask in a society still rather naively obsessed with individualism at all costs.)

So what are the official positions of the candidates on science, across the board? Well, it has taken a while for them to get around to even having comprehensive positions (that you hear about, anyway), but it’s all out there now. NPR had a nice piece with some summaries that might interest you, containing comparisons of the official positions of the McCain and Obama campaigns. Yeah, it’s probably all still rhetoric, ready to be abandoned at the drop of a hat (since nobody’s going to hold them strongly to a mere science position), and of only limited meaning if they won’t even take the time to debate the issues for real, but it’s a start, I suppose. You can find audio here, along with transcripts.

[Update: In a comment, Paul Guinnessy mentioned:

“You’ll also find stacks of information on the Physics Today web site, including weekly updates of any changes in the position of the candidates. If all goes according to plan, we should be blogging the conventions–on topics related to science.”

(Thanks Paul!)]


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